This unique story follows three young friends who would go on to create one of the most legendary and important wineries in Sicily. This benchmark producer evolved out of a means to keep the boys busy during their last summer before heading off to college. Founded by three friends, Giambattista ‘Titta’ Cilia, Cirino Strano, and Giusto Occhipinti, Azienda Agricola COS (an acronym for their last names) started in 1980 when Titta’s father put them in charge of some grapes to try their hand at winemaking. It was a success and the boys loved it. From that moment, Titta and Giusto made wine their lifelong passion and still run the winery to this day. Even from the start, Titta and Giusto had an uncommon passionate and idealistic view of winemaking. Since the inception of the winery, no chemicals have been used in the vineyards and their minimal interventionist approach has evolved with techniques like native yeast fermentation and amphorae (clay pots) for aging certain cuvées. This was definitely not in fashion in the ‘80s at the height of commercial farming. The term “natural wine movement” wasn’t a thing when COS was making wines with this same natural ethos. They were, and still are, an inspiration to many throughout Italy and abroad to pursue a more pure and natural approach to winemaking.
COS is in the heart of Sicily’s only DOCG, Cerasuolo di Vittoria, which requires a blend of the two most important red grapes of the area, Frappato and Nero d’Avola. At COS they also strive to better understand each variety in its singular expression so you can experience how these two unique and indigenous grapes combine to give you something entirely unique and singular. Sicily is in a state of renaissance when it comes to winemaking. The glory and beauty found in these unique indigenous varieties has evolved with this ancient land over millennia.
“We must remember that the Earth is not just a legacy inherited from our fathers, but it is also one that we pass on to our children.” Giusto Occhipinti
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Estate Owned By:
Giusto Occhipinti and Giambattista ‘Titta’ Cilia
Farming and Land:
Organic and biodynamically farmed land in the southeastern hills of Sicily near the city of Vittoria, Ragusa. The unique terroir begins aboaut 700 above the Mediterranean Sea and consists of red clay soils, combined with both limestone and sand on the 34 hectare estate (84 acres). Certified Organic since 2007.
Nero di Lupo: 2000 cases Frappato: 3000 cases Cerasuolo di Vittoria: 4000 cases Pithos Rosso: 1000 cases Zibibbo in Pithos: 1000 cases